Suitable for organisations with 5 or more PCs, though some schemes require a higher level of commitment. There are various options available in perpetual or non-perpetual forms to cater for the different needs of organisations. Where a subscription benefit is part of the product, that component lasts only for the term of the scheme. Volume licensing programmes are an easy and generally more economic way to buy multiple Microsoft software product licences. With volume-based licensing, licences are viewed and administered on a centralised Microsoft licensing site (VLSC - Volume Licence Service Center).
There are several key benefits of volume licenses which do not apply to retail licences including re-imaging rights. This means that System Administrators can create a customised image – Operating system, drivers and possibly key apps, using a single volume licence key, which can then be rolled out to all licensed machines (rather than customising each machine individually).
The following schemes are available:
Open Licensing is the entry-level volume licensing scheme for organisations and generally offers better pricing than Retail (FPP) purchases. Having met the initial entry requirements, the scheme runs for 2 years during which period further licences can be added one or more at a time as needed. Although the scheme expires, the licences purchased are perpetual (except for Online Subscription Services) and may be used indefinitely. All payment is up-front at the time of purchase. Software Assurance is optional.
Open Value Licensing is a 3-year volume licensing scheme which includes Software Assurance as a standard feature (no licence only options). Payment may be up-front in full at the time of purchase, or may be split per year over the term of the scheme, with protected pricing. In general the minimum qualification is five products (any mix) but the Company-wide and Subscription (non-perpetual rental) options are more advantageously priced requiring a commitment, enterprise-wide, to one or more of a small number of key products.
MPSA (Microsoft Products and Services Agreement) is a volume licence scheme aimed primarily at organisations with at least 250 desktops. It offers perpetual licences and online services, the products are split into the three product pools – Applications, Servers and Systems (independently) which remain active only while product purchases achieve a required level. The only exception to this is Azure which has no minimum amount requirement and is billed quarterly in arrears. A Pool can be re-activated at any time by purchasing the minimum qualifying requirements in a single order. Software Assurance is optional.
Enterprise & Enterprise Subscription are volume schemes aimed at organisations with at least 250 desktops who are prepared to commit enterprise-wide to certain key products which include the Software Assurance benefits as standard. The Enterprise option results in perpetual licences, the Enterprise Subscription option is a non-perpetual, rental scheme. For these schemes, although assisted by us, the client contracts directly with Microsoft.
School Agreement Microsoft's School Agreement is a comprehensive, annually renewable licensing programme. It is an option for Primary/Secondary level schools and all eligible PC’s must be committed to the scheme for certain qualifying products. It is a subscription licensing program (rental, non-perpetual licences) which includes Software Assurance as standard, with the option to commit to a 1 or 3-year term and the ability to renew or buy-out the licences at the end of the term. The School Agreement is effectively superseded by the OVS-ES (Enrollment for Education) option.
Enrollment for Education Solutions (EES) is an alternative option to the School agreement and is based on a Full Time Employee (FTE) count, rather than the total number of desktops. The licences available under this agreement are subscription licences (not perpetual). At least one or more of the Desktop Platform products; Windows Professional upgrade, Microsoft Office Professional Plus, and/or Core CAL Suite or Enterprise CAL Suite, must be purchased for all FTEs. Once a customer licenses a product institution-wide, all institution-owned or leased devices and all faculty and staff are covered for use of that product. The institution’s students can also use the licensed products on institution computers in classrooms or open access labs. EES is implemented as OVS-ES, one of the Open Value schemes.